My biggest complaint

richard plumb

Distinguished Member
do you mean when you play a widescreen movie on a 4:3 panel, there is light spillage above and below? Or outside the 4:3 area? Do you have keystone correction applied? That can create a trapezium shaped overspill, which is the actual projectors output before it is corrected by the keystone.


Actually, the problem is none of those you mean. I mean, my room is physically lighted by the projector. The screen area displays the image, but there is light spilling all through the room. At the cinema, despite an enormous screen, the cinema is still very dark even when bright scenes are being how do i get that?!



Active Member
Lots of dark, heavy curtaining I would imagine. As a minimum, along the side walls from the screen wall to at least half the length of the wall. Its on my list of things to do.



hmmmmm, im not getting the answer i was hoping for! I get the feeling that this is not a problem that can be easly resolved. I had hoped that there were simply certain types of projector which could avoid all the light leekage into the room area.

So am i to presume that the only way to manage this would be by setting up a rear projection system?



You need to decorate your walls, ceiling and floor with black carpet tiles.

That's what cinemas do!! :)


Distinguished Member
Buns, you know my Brother also has the plv-30, he has a Cinema room in his Garage, he painted the walls and ceiling a very dark blue, almost black and carpet navy.. I think it looks dreadful but it works, I coudn't believe the absence of light spillage, it really seems to help contrast IMHO.
My Lounge also lights up and I could also read a book at times due to light spillage :(


I don't think the term "light spillage" is correct.

IIRC "spillage" is directly projected light, intended to be on the screen, which extends beyond the screen.

e.g. as mentioned earlier, using keystone, 16/9 panel on a 4/3 screen etc...

As Tim says, get your room darker, but I don't understand what more you expect :confused:

Even a "small" regular CRT TV - 25" will illuminate a room during bright scenes, as will a RPTV etc...

If you had/have no light eminating from the display device, you'd have no picture.

Viewable pictures do tend to be composed of light (reflected) :p

The matter of fact is, if your room is paintend white, or in a light color, you won't get the best out of you projector. Contrast and black level are killed by the reflected light, which bounces around the room and back onto the screen.

In most situations, a dark ceiling (doesn't have to be black however) does help the most to soak up stray light, but if the sidewalls are close to the screen, it's best if they are dark as well. The wall the screen is on is ideally black, or a very dark grey, as this helps the floating image effect.

I realise that in most living rooms dark colours are not always desirable, but it doesn't have to look ugly. My projection room (is not the living room though ;) ) is purple/lilac, with 2 dark shades for the ceiling, a lighter shade for the walls and ivory for the door and windows (oh, and black for the projection wall). I was afraid intially, the room would look small (it's not very big as it is), but that turned out not to be the case, and i'm now very happy with the result (and I'm not much of a painter :D )


I actually do have dark walls and ceiling! I am getting areas lighted that are not even in direct view of the screen, hence i have to assume that the projector is send out out unwanted light on its route to the screen. And yes, im fully aware that if the was no light, there would be no picture! :p

I have a feeling that rear projection would do alot for me! Does anyone on here do it that way?

before anyone assumes it, i dont have the cash to do this, im just planning for the future! I have a lovely 12 foot wide arch way which would be ideal! All i have to do is persuade my parents to give me that room!



Distinguished Member
Hi Buns

Why don't you get yourself a large white bed sheet and pin it in your archway, then project onto the back of it, the results might not be that bad.

just an idea.

Chris Frost

Well-known Member
Front projection remains the most cost effective route for large screen video at home. Rear projection solves some problems, but adds a whole new set of its own. Cost, depth, cost, focus, cost, image brightness when viewing of axis, and er...cost.

If light leakage is a problem then you need to identify the source in order to treat it effectively.

Light spilling from the air vents on the projector: solution - build an open framed projector box and cover it with speaker grill cloth. This will reduce the light spill without causing heat and ventilation problems.

Light reflected off the screen - solution 1 - reduce contrast so less light is projected.
2 - use a less reflective screen surface (greyhawk, or a DIY solution)
3 - repaint the walls and ceiling with a matt paint that is less light reflective
4 - build a recessed screen within a false wall. From screen surface to wall surface set the border at 45 degrees and line it with black velvet. The border should be at least 1ft deep.

b.t.w. I'd be amazed if the bed sheet idea worked. Not one I would try.

You'll never stop light spilling back from the screen, but it is possible to control it.

Good luck.



the bed sheet certainly sounds interesting! can think of better uses though! ;)

I already have my leekage out of vents sorted as im projecting from a cupboard......

The problem must be related to the room colour and screen. Screen is white and room is dark(ish) blue...... it will have to go on my diy list to darken things down!

My question was basically because of the image on the entry to avs...... they have an image witin a totally dar background and it looks fantastic! It mustnt be a FP!

thanks guys!



Distinguished Member

To add to my above post I should have mentioned that my Brother is using painted mdf to project on, from what Chris said it would produce less light reflection.


Standard Member
Buns, that piccy shows an NEC jobby just above the screen, so I'd say FP. Remember that this is a photo, and contrast etc can always get enhanced by this - one reason why screenshots are always misleading - black levels always look better ina reasonable photo than in real life (in my experience, anyway). Also the whole room looks blacked out, which will help...


When i think about it, john and david are very bright in the foreground, as is the there must be some visual trickery going on.



Distinguished Member
if you use a higher gain screen that has a small viewing angle less light would be thrown out towards the ceiling, floor and walls and you could drop the brightness/contrast due to the higher gain of the screen.

A friend of mine is using a barco 808s in a black room and you can still read a newspaper headline during btighter shots.

but are you taliking about the light reflected off the screen or light that is escaping from the projector, ie during a black scene do you still see this light in arears of the room ??


That sounds like a good plan and quite simple to implement!

I presume in general that crt will suffer less from this nuisance because of lower light levels?


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